<< by on May 2nd, 2011
One of the most common questions I am asked by prospective clients when consulting for pay-per-click (PPC) management services is: “Why should I hire you to manage my PPC account instead of hiring someone to do it in-house?” This is a fair question, and to be honest, it really depends on your company’s unique situation.
Let me present a hypothetical situation: You are the CMO of a professional moving company in the heart of a big college town. You are currently running a PPC campaign with a budget of $15,000 a month. Not only is it taking a lot of your time from other important endeavors, but also you are not receiving the ROI you hoped for. What upsets you the most is that you see that your ads are getting a lot of clicks, but then they are not converting into transactions.
By now, you are at your wits end with this PPC account and you are tired of losing money. You realize you need help – you need a professional(s) to manage your PPC account.
So what now? Do you hire someone in-house or do you outsource it to an agency that specializes in PPC?
Here are 3 reasons why outsourcing your PPC work is more economical than keeping it in-house.
There are many facets to a successful PPC campaign, including: keyword research, bid management, landing pages, etc. Various tools (free, paid, and custom) have been developed and will continue to develop to improve the PPC management process.
Agencies are not only constantly researching and testing these various tools so that they may offer you better results, but also build their own to make the process more effective.
The landscape of PPC advertising is continually evolving. Google frequently makes changes to its algorithm, which makes managing these accounts a dynamic task. These modifications are critical to the success of your PPC campaigns, making on-going training mandatory.
Agencies are best equipped for this. Along with training, most agencies attend various search marketing conferences to learn new ways to make their existing processes more efficient.
Let’s not forget about the biggest elephant in the room – which one is more cost effective?
Having a PPC expert in-house means a salary plus benefits. The starting rate for a PPC professional is around $45,000 a year. Next, you will have to consider their employee benefits package:
- Health insurance
- Vacation time
- Sick leave
After the benefits package you are looking at $60,000 a year, not to mention bonuses, future pay raises, and on-going PPC training. Now let’s compare with prices for outsourcing.
First of all, not all PPC agencies have the same cost structure. Search Engine Land wrote an article on four different pricing model types, and evaluates each of them. Generally speaking, most reputable PPC companies charge around a minimum of $3,000 or a percentage (usually around 20%) of media budget per month (more budget = higher cost). Not to mention, you get a team of experts.
Let’s take a look at how much our moving company with a media budget of $15,000 a month measures up:
In-house – $60,000 per individual
Outsource – $36,000 per team (savings of $24,000 a year)
To be fair, all PPC agencies are not created equal. To protect yourself, evaluate each PPC Firm to determine which one is the best fit for your company.